Morocco to unveil green projects on Earth Day

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Rabat will inaugurate 10 major environmental protection projects this month when it becomes one of six world cities to lead celebrations for Earth Day, a Morocco official said Sunday.

The Morocco capital will join Washington, New York, Shanghai, Rome and Mumbai as leading hosts of events on April 17-24 for the 40th anniversary of the event organised by the US-based Earth Day Network.

"To commemorate this day, Rabat will be an example on the world scale by inaugurating 10 long-range projects focused on the protection of the environment in the kingdom," an official told AFP.

The projects will include pushing environmental education in schools and the establishment of a national observatory for environment and rural development, according a statement by Prime Minister Abbas El Fassi.

They will also aim to fight desertification, preserve ecosystems, treat waste and end the use of plastic bags.

The Moroccan capital has more than 260 hectares (642 acres) of green space as well as a green belt covering around 1,063 hectares.

Morocco is the first African, Muslim and Arab nation to commit to holding national events in honour of the 40th anniversary of Earth Day on April 22, according to the Network.